Theodore Sizer was one of the nation's most respected education-reform advocates. He founded the Essential Schools movement in 1984, which maintains, among other things, that students and teachers are members of the school's community. It emphasized depth of knowledge, placing more importance on mastering a few subjects than the shallow overview of many. Sizer also once held the position of dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where he earned his own graduate degrees. He passed away on October 21, 2009 at the age of 77.